Tag Archives: Experience

Professional F.O.M.O

FOMO

F.O.M.O or fear of missing out is something we’ve all experienced. Personal F.O.M.O gives you that annoying little pang of pity. Oh my friends are at Coachella and I’m not. Boo hoo! But professional F.O.M.O leaves you feeling anxious, frustrated and confused. The consequences are much more far-reaching when you feel like you’re missing out on your career.

First, let me state that I love my current job. The projects I work on challenge me daily, I work with some of the best people around and I’m doing work that helps people. I don’t want to leave my job, I just don’t know if I want to stay forever. Fear. Of. Missing. Out.

The plan all through college was to enter the public relations industry upon graduation. It felt (and looked on paper) that I did everything right. But the road took me elsewhere and for that, I’m beyond grateful. Still even with a great job that includes traveling, I still feel like I’m missing out. I look at my two best friends as well as pretty much everyone I graduated with and wonder about all of the what if’s. Such a short time ago, I had everything figured out. Now I have no clue where to go from here.

Admitting my professional F.O.M.O isn’t easy. I don’t want to sound ungrateful for my current job nor do I want to sound like I’m complaining. Life is good and I’m certainly developing a wealth of transferable skills. But someone please tell me how I build media contacts when I do not work with the media?

What also contributes to my F.O.M.O condition is my inherit need to plan. It’s just in my blood: the color-coding, making plans, setting goals, knowing what’s next. But right now, I have no idea what the future holds and am desperately trying to become comfortable with that.

I’m trying to manage this F.O.M.O by recognizing it’s normal not to know exactly what you want. I’ve also written professional goals to achieve at my current job. As far as keeping my public relations edge, I utilize Feedly to compile a great list of PR blogs and publications to check on my commute home. I’m also trying to network through social media to possibly set up informational interviews. Hopefully, all of this will help keep my F.O.M.O at bay!

Throughout this F.O.M.O journey, one thing is evident: comparing yourself to others will just drive you crazy. Everyone’s path is different and unique to them; it doesn’t make one way right and the other wrong. I need to figure out what I want and how to get there without worrying about what my friends are doing.

Have you experience professional F.O.M.O? How did you cope? Please please please share your thoughts in the comments below!

The Right To Be Picky

Job searching is a full time job especially for someone like me. I have an color-coded spreadsheet broken down by location. I have five different cover letters tailored to specific positions. I must apply to at least two jobs everyday and update my spreadsheet weekly. I know it sounds a bit crazy but I need to do everything in my power to get a job, right?

When I look at a position, I envision myself working at that company in that role. Most positions include public relations, marketing, communications, social media or development somewhere in the title. However, after hundreds of applications, I started to apply to anything remotely comparable to my skill sets.

Fast forward to yesterday when I commuted into Manhattan for an interview with American Express Publishing. The position was for a Business Assistant, someone to complete administrative tasks and enter some data into spreadsheets. Certainly, I could manage that. The man I interviewed with, the Director of Finance, thought otherwise.

This man was the definition of honesty. He said my resume was impressive and that he could tell I was eager to learn. He appreciated me coming in on such a miserable day (hurricanes in Manhattan yesterday) but said I wasn’t right for the position. Mind you, I barely had spoken at this point. He offered to hold on to my resume in case a position opened in their PR department. We shook hands, I thanked him profusely and back I went to New Jersey pretty disappointed.

Yes, rejection isn’t fun nor is commuting in the rain. But, I was reminded that I do have the right to be picky when applying for jobs. I am allowed to pass up opportunities that aren’t right for me. I am allowed to wait for the right job to come along. It doesn’t have to be perfect but it can be close. I don’t have much patience so this is hard for me. I am going to try and remind myself of this experience every time I read a job description.

I was also reminded yesterday that being passionate is important. My interviewer saw how passionate I was when talking about the career I wanted. He praised me for it and said it was more important to be passionate then to be employed. That alone was worth the wet commute into Manhattan.

Do recent graduates have the right to be picky? Don’t be afraid to share your opinion!

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